We have provided a “Summer Reading List” to help your young scholars sharpen their minds through the summer months when there is no pressure to be intellectually active.
Let me recommend a proactive approach to the “Summer Reading List” integrated with the family activities in which you already engage. The topics to investigate on this reading list are also topics your scholar will be studying some time during the next school year. As you investigate organize your thoughts, report findings, and enjoy an intellectual activity together. The advantage for your scholar, besides having a great time studying, will be to experience a topic first hand, one that will be covered in class.
Curious scholars have refined observation skills that cause them to wonder about what they observe and ask questions which lead to further investigation and research. You can take normally passive activities and turn them into an activity for curious scholars. A trip to the beach with a little advanced preparation can be a highly motivating study of marine life not just collecting shells on the beach at low tide. The key to success of this kind of activity is that you explore as a family, through the summer.
Reading is a great and crucial activity but can be passive. Topic investigations on the other hand provide motivation to: 1) read with a purpose, 2) develop language skills and vocabulary, (especially if you journal or keep a scrapbook of your “investigations”) 3) build worldview experiences, and 4) form a family bond in the area of the intellect.
The books have been organized into two categories. One category is “Recreational Reading”; the other is “Topic Investigations” which is a partial list of the topics that will be covered in each grade level. Some of the topics will have some literature associated with them, others will not.
Important note: There is no required number of books to read. We will not require your child to turn in any reports or scrapbooks (although they are free to share if they wish). However, when your child is asked “What did you do this summer?” he or she will have a rich experience to draw on. When the class studies a topic you and your child studied together, your child will be able to enrich the conversation with a new found knowledge and thus shine as a scholar.